I wrote this a few years ago and thought it was time to recycle it. Happy Purim!
Did you ever wonder how the Purim story would be presented in contemporary culture? In the spirit of this crazy holiday, and in honor of my love of old TV shows, particularly situation comedies, here is a selection of pivotal scenes from the Purim story as they might have been portrayed on popular TV shows of the past:
The Dick Van Dyke Show: As Haman approaches Esther to plead for his life, he trips over an ottoman and falls on Esther. At that moment, the King (played by Carl Reiner) enters the room and fires him.
I Love Lucy: After learning that the king only picked her as Queen because she was beautiful and was bragging to everyone about her good looks, Esther shocks her new husband by appearing at the public marriage reception dressed in a fright wig with blackened teeth. The king promptly faints.
All in the Family: Esther takes so long to tell the king about Haman’s plan to kill the Jews that his eyes glaze over and he pretends to fall asleep in his favorite chair as he listens to the convoluted story. He only agrees to order Haman killed when his assistant Harbonah (whom he usually called “meathead”) explains to him the sociological implications of bigotry.
Sesame Street: Haman sings to Ahasueraus: “One of these Persians is not like the other. One of these Persians just doesn’t belong…”
I’ve Got a Secret: Esther is forced to cancel her planned guest appearance on the show because Mordecai told her not to tell anyone her secret.
The Andy Griffith Show: Mordecai doesn’t bother to tell the King about Bigtan and Teresh who are plotting to assassinate him. He just runs up to them yelling: “Citizen’s Arrest, Citizen’s Arrest”.
The Honeymooners: Ahasueraus grabs Esther after Haman’s hanging and says: “Baby, you’re the greatest!”.
Friends : 4 Jews miss all the excitement because they spend all of their time in the city’s coffeehouse and bookstore called: the Shushan Noose.
Lassie: Esther only is able to save the Jews because Mordecai’s faithful collie climbs under the palace fence and pulls her by the arm to meet him in secret by the gate.
Mr. Ed: Haman does lead Mordecai around on the horse, but to avoid embarrassing himself further, Haman has the horse say: “Thus is done to the man whom the King wishes to honor”.
Happy Purim from the Dobrusin family!